New Delhi: The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) has earmarked its highest-ever number of teams for deployment in Odisha and West Bengal as part of its preparations for the impending cyclone Yaas, a senior officer said on Tuesday.
The federal contingency force has committed a total of 112 teams for deployment in five states and the Union Territory of Andaman and Nicobar Islands which are expected to be affected by the cyclone developing in the Bay of Bengal.
Out of these, the highest the number of 52 teams are designated for Odisha followed by 45 teams for West Bengal.
The rest of the teams are being stationed in states like Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Jharkhand and the UT of Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
NDRF Director General S N Pradhan said in a tweet that this was this was the "highest ever" commitment of its teams in the two states of Odisha and West Bengal.
A senior official said the number of NDRF teams earmarked for these two states during past cyclones have never been this high.
Teams in these two states can also be enhanced if the states require or situation demands, he added.
Cyclonic storm Yaas is likely to make a landfall near Balasore in north Odisha sometime around Wednesday noon. It can possess a speed of 155 kmph-165 kmph, gusting to 185 kmph, the Met department had said on Monday.
Each NDRF team has 47 personnel who are equipped with tree and pole cutters, communication gadgets, inflatable boats and basic medical aid.
These teams, along with various disaster combat and mitigation units, are presently carrying out evacuation and awareness drives in the affected areas so that no lives are lost, the senior officer said.
Pradhan had told PTI on Monday that at least 50 more teams have been kept as backup at its various country-wide bases and they can be airlifted for cyclone Yaas duties as and when required.